Connect with us

Movie News

Movie Review: The Circular and Comatose Scares of ‘Rings’

Published

on

Rings Movie Review MovieSpoon.com

Rings brings Samara into the digital age–do the scares go viral? Read our movie review to find out:

[dropcap]T[/dropcap]he scary tape is back and the rules haven’t changed. If you watch the VHS tape of spooky images in Rings, you’ll be killed by the wet and barefoot girl Samara in seven days (as specified in a following telephone call).

Rings Movie Review MovieSpoon.com

Ick.

But who watches VHS tapes anymore? Since the last Ring movie, entertainment media shifted from VHS to DVD to hard digital copies to digital streaming. Imagine how terrifying it would be if the cursed video went viral and nearly every human being absorbed in social media trends would die out. Samara would be considered a threat to humanity and society would change itself to prevent the spread of streaming content. That would be a cool premise, but this isn’t that movie. This is the prequel to that movie that may never come as the Ring franchise still believes it has some integrity left.

Similar to the previous string of supernatural horror movies, Rings attempts to dig deeper into the concept of supernatural powers with history and a little science. There’s a strong opening to establish the length of Samara’s reach as she can follow you onto an airplane, traveling through the in-flight movie monitors and crawl out of radar screens in the cockpit. This is a silly scene, but it opens the doors for how easier it is for Samara to claim her victims in this era. We have electronic monitors on everything from fridge doors to giant billboards. Can you imagine a giant Samara exiting a billboard to claim another soul? Sorry, this isn’t that movie either.

In this movie, Samara’s tape is discovered by college professor Gabriel (Johnny Galecki) at a flea market. He is intrigued by the effects of the tape (now transferred into a digital file) and sets up a secret project with fellow students. He studies them after being exposed, tracks the days until they will die and then prevents death by providing them with another student to show a copied version of the video file to, essentially playing hot potato with the Samara curse.

Rings Movie Review MovieSpoon.com

Johnny Galecki should’ve stuck with ‘The Big Bang Theory.’

Why would college students ever agree to such a ridiculous experiment? Aside from the very posh club he sets up for participants in his secret laboratory with loud music and drinks (I wish I was making that up), the professor reasons that he can find a solid answer for the existence of souls after death. I’m not sure what made him believe he could find such an answer in that cursed tape, but he must have made a compelling case for students to potentially sacrifice their lives for this project. That secret club must really be worth it.

One person drawn into this experiment is Holt (Alex Roe) who soon has his girlfriend Julia (Matilda Lutz) voluntarily watch the footage to save her boyfriend’s life. But, oh no, the video file can’t be copied for some spooky and unexplained reason. The only way to prevent Julia from being murdered in seven days is to find Samara’s bones and burn them to set her free. The mystery is afoot as Julia and Holt venture off the campus and into the countryside of ghost stories, haunted churches and dark secrets. Don’t worry about Samara’s curse, you students who wanted extra credit. The bland hunk and bland girlfriend are on the case!

With an eerie score by Hans Zimmer, there is a decent atmosphere to a lot of the scary scenes as Julia ventures deeper down the well hole, even if these scenes are only cosmetically frightening. Julia searches a crypt for the body of Samara, only to find herself sealed inside the tight space, shackled and nearly drug down a well. She starts having visions of Samara’s mother and Samara’s living environment the closer she draws towards the bones.

Rings Movie Review MovieSpoon.com

Look out behind you!

One unlucky student experiences Samara’s power first-hand when the ghost pops out of an HDTV that has been slammed to the ground. I even dug the look of Samara with her dimension-defying entrances and her jittery appearance of digital distortion. While these scares rely on some not-so-believable CGI, they are at least decent in their setup, though they fail completely for jump-scares.

While trying to get to these lukewarm frights, however, the script doesn’t bother to give us a reason to care about the characters or even know them all that well. How much do we really know about Julia to hope she’ll survive an encounter with Samara? From what I can gather in the few scenes that don’t involve the investigation, she likes to use Skype and smell her boyfriend’s shirt. What do we know about Holt? He makes dumb choices in college classes and likes to show off his abs. There is not a single scene where their chemistry feels real as their devotion to each other is seen more as a basic requirement of the script. Most of the scenes between them in bed are inane and non-sexual with vapid talk of stories that go nowhere. How can two young people so full of life and ambition be such a snooze to be around?

I don’t expect the most profound of dialogue out of these simple ghost stories, but maybe I should if subpar writing and acting such as this has become an acceptable norm. Matilda Lutz somehow finds a way to make the most mundane of plot-pushing dialogue sound silly and boring. She mutters such lines as “look, a bird” and “she was your daughter” with an unemotional tone in scenes where she should be terrified and uneasy.

Related: Shock: Thriller ‘Split’ Tops Revenue Charts Again with $26.2M Take

Alex Roe feels wasted in a role where the funniest thing he says is a tired joke about chicken fried steak (“Is it chicken or steak?”). His bland delivery of this line along with the confusing sarcasm of the old woman who say he’s funny make a rather dull scene of exposition more cringe-worthy than it should be. Even the usually reliable Vincent D’Onofrio doesn’t feel in top form as a blind priest that doesn’t have much personality.

Read more to get the rest of the Rings movie review:

PreviousNext
View Next

Izzy

Movie Magic: The De-Aging Technique of The Irishman

Published

on

By

Have you read Izzy yet? If so, you know that Izzy makes the apples that give the Gods their youth and immortality. It also seems Robert De Niro discovered one of Izzy’s apples too… In Martin Scorsese’s upcoming biographical film, he stars as Frank “The Irishman” Sheeran, a labor union leader and alleged hitman for the Bufalino crime family. The trailer for the movie, which will premieres NEXT WEEK (!), also features a “de-aged” De Niro. “We’re so used to watching them as the older faces,” Scorsese said in an interview on the A24 podcast. “Does it change the eyes at all? …If that’s the case, what was in the eyes that I liked? Was it intensity? Was it gravitas? Was it threat?…How do we get that? I don’t know.” Some might consider this magic and I for one can’t wait to see the impact of Izzy’s apples on screen for myself. 😉

Continue Reading

Movie News

“Captain Marvel” Retains Top Slot at the Box Office

Published

on

It’s no surprise that in its second weekend, the first Marvel Cinematic Universe of 2019 is still riding high. Captain Marvel, the latest in the MCU with Brie Larson starring as the lead, generated another $69 million over the weekend, placing its domestic total at $266 million. Tallying up the international box office, the film’s global total to date is $760 million. Despite the online controversy, the film is looking to be another strong box office smash for Disney and Marvel.

As for the premieres for the weekend, and there were plenty, they were all over the map. Just below Captain Marvel was the animated adventure Wonder Park, bringing in $16 million, another film with controversy when the director’s name was removed from the picture after sexual harassment charges. Five Feet Apart, the dying teen drama about a romance amid cystic fibrosis, only came in at #3 with a weekend gross of $13 million. And debuting the lowest in the top 10 for debuts was Captive State, a sci-fi dystopian tale, only making $3 million. The film debuted so low the little film No Manches Frida 2 was able to sneak about it at #6 with a gross of $3.8 million.

Drops were fairly low all around for the returning films, mostly because Captain Marvel was dominating the previous weekend. The only milestone worth noting is that The LEGO Movie 2, after six weeks at the box office, finally cracked $100 million. And the sun is now setting on Green Book’s post-Oscar run by coming in at #10 for the final weekend of its top 10 run over the past few weeks.

View the full top ten weekend box office results below:

Captain Marvel ($69,318,000)

Wonder Park ($16,000,000)

Five Feet Apart ($13,150,000)

How to Train Your Dragon: The Hidden World ($9,345,000)

Tyler Perry’s A Madea Family Funeral ($8,085,000)

No Manches Frida 2 ($3,894,000)

Captive State ($3,163,000)

The LEGO Movie 2: The Second Part ($2,135,000)

Alita: Battle Angel ($1,900,000)

Green Book ($1,277,000)

Next weekend, Captain Marvel may very well have some competition when Jordan Peele’s new horror film Us hits over 3,600 theaters.

Continue Reading

Movie News

“Dragon” Continues To Soar, “Funeral” Close Behind, “Green Book” Back

Published

on

With little competition for the weekend, How to Train Your Dragon: The Hidden World, the third in the animated fantasy saga, was able to secure the box office once more. In its second weekend, the animated epic made $30 million to push its domestic total to $97 million. So far the film has done about the same as the previous film and is on track to stay in the top 10 for a few more weeks in March.

Debuts this weekend were small with one big exception. Tyler Perry’s latest Madea film, A Madea Family Funeral, naturally made a relatively big splash with its dedicated audience. Starting at #2, the film made $27 million for its first weekend. No word on the budget yet but it’s most likely on a budget as most Tyler Perry productions are, so it’s safe to call this a success, especially for debuting with a box office so close to Dragon.

The rest of the premieres were not as strong at all. Greta, the new thriller starring Chloe Moretz, debuted all the way down at #8 with $4.5 million box office. To be fair, however, the film was in a constant battle for its spot as three other films also reported earnings around $4 million for the weekend. Of note, Green Book, fresh off winning the Academy Award for Best Picture one weekend ago, splashed back into more theaters to arise even higher in the top 10 with its domestic total now sitting at $73 million. Don’t count on it remaining there long as bigger blockbusters will be swooping as we plow through the last remnants of winter movies.

Check out the full listing of the top 10 box office weekend results below:

How to Train Your Dragon: The Hidden World ($30,046,000)

Tyler Perry’s A Madea Family Funeral ($27,050,000)

Alita: Battle Angel ($7,000,000)

The LEGO Movie 2: The Second Part ($6,615,000)

Green Book ($4,711,000)

Fighting With My Family ($4,691,284)

Isn’t it Romantic ($4,645,000)

Greta ($4,585,000)

What Men Want ($2,700,000)

Happy Death Day 2U ($2,516,000)

Next weekend is once again all about Marvel as their latest superhero solo film, Captain Marvel, will be appearing in 4,100 theaters.

Continue Reading

Find Us On Facebook

More

Izzy10 months ago

Get to Know the Story: Izzy

Here at Rogue Matter we’re constantly churning out content, but also recognize that it’s important to take the time to...

Key to the City10 months ago

Get to Know the Story: Key to the City

Here at Rogue Matter we’re constantly churning out content, but also recognize that it’s important to take the time to...

Gabby Goes to College10 months ago

Get to Know the Story: Gabby Goes to College

Here at Rogue Matter we’re constantly churning out content, but also recognize that it’s important to take the time to...

Key to the City10 months ago

Key to the City x Bond

—Agent: The following is for your eyes only— Talk about a character who won’t live and let die! Just like...

Movie Vampires MovieSpoon.com Movie Vampires MovieSpoon.com
Izzy10 months ago

16 Sultry Movie Vampires That Will Make You BEG for Immortality from Izzy

[dropcap]W[/dropcap]hen it comes to immortality, we’ve got you covered with the Gods and Goddesses in Izzy. But when it comes...

Gabby Goes to College10 months ago

The 16 Greatest Villains That Will Make You Join the Dark Side

[dropcap]A[/dropcap]s much as everyone likes to cheer on the hero, there are certain movies where you can’t help but feel...

Izzy10 months ago

Movie Magic: The De-Aging Technique of The Irishman

Have you read Izzy yet? If so, you know that Izzy makes the apples that give the Gods their youth...

Key to the City10 months ago

Key to the City – We need you to tell one of Andy’s stories

Imagine you woke up everyday in a different body. The twist is, no matter who you are today, it's up...

Key to the City10 months ago

The 10 Most Quintessential New York Filming Locations

We know LA gets all the glory when it comes to the movies, but New York has seen its own...

Gabby Goes to College10 months ago

The 10 Most Badass Female Film Characters of All Time

You know Gabby (or if you don’t, get caught up on Gabby Goes to College now for a sinister good...

Trending